European stocks steady after Greece scraps referendum

AFP, Friday 4 Nov 2011

Markets calm as Greek prime minister ditches plans for a national vote on a proposed euro zone rescue package, a move that upset global shares earlier in the week

European stocks steadied on Friday after Athens scrapped its bailout referendum, and as investors eagerly awaited the outcome of a G20 summit dominated by the eurozone debt crisis.

The leaders of world biggest economic powers are gathered in the French seaside resort of Cannes, hoping to prevent the sovereign debt crisis from plunging the world into a fresh recession.
Asian indices advanced as Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou ditched his plans for a national vote on last week's eurozone rescue package, which had drawn condemnation and shocked world markets earlier this week.
The fast-moving events in Europe are largely expected to overshadow publication of US non-farm payrolls data later on Friday, dealers said.
London's FTSE 100 index of top companies added 0.25 per cent to 5,559.10 points in midday deals, while in Paris the CAC 40 dipped 0.48 per cent to 3,181.17 and Frankfurt's DAX 30 slid 0.72 per cent to 6,089.45 points.
The European single currency climbed to $1.3839, up from $1.3808 late in New York on Thursday.
"Markets have reacted very positively to news that Greek Prime Minister Papandreou has backed down from a referendum on the Eurozone bailout plan," said broker Owen Ireland at Valbury Capital.
Greek Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos said on Friday he had told his European partners that Greece had officially abandoned its plan that had enraged leaders Europe-wide.
The announcement came ahead of a pivotal confidence vote in parliament, which could spark the collapse of the government and plunge Greece and the eurozone into further turmoil.
"The G20 summit concludes in Cannes today but continues to be overshadowed by events in Athens, as leaders look at ways of boosting the funds of the IMF while reiterating an action plan for global growth," said CMC Markets analyst Michael Hewson.
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